Entertainment Earth

Are you game? Turn your gaming pastime into a fulfilling and lucrative game development career

If you own a smartphone, tablet, laptop, or desktop computer, chances are you’ve played at least one video game. From the mobile multiplayer game Mobile Legends, first-person shooter game Call of Duty, multiplayer strategy game DOTA 2, the 3D imagination platform Roblox, to the coin-earning games of popular shopping apps, gaming has become one of the most ubiquitous forms of entertainment and, for some, an avenue for socialization.

Gaming is so immersive and exhilarating that some people play for hours, while serious gamers play esports or stream games online. However, there’s another way for players to reach a gamer’s high and that’s through building their own game or game development. 

Game development or GameDev is the art of creating video games, from conceptualization, design, programming, producing to releasing a computer game. GameDev allows gaming enthusiasts to dip their hands into the creative and technical process of gameplay and watch their ideas come to life. Aside from the fulfillment of building a game from scratch, a career in game development may also be one of the financially rewarding and secure professions. 

“Although video games have been around for decades, their popularity have recently increased. The expanding demographics of today’s market make game production relevant. In the future, as more people play games, it will create a demand for more engaging games and better access to them,” said Cristina Pascua, Mapúa University School of Information Technology (SOIT) program chair for Bachelor of Science in Entertainment and Multimedia Computing. 

Pascua emphasized that the video game industry is bigger than the combined film and music industries. Films are often translated into video games at the same time popular games are adapted into films. Tech giants like Meta, Google, and Apple are also easing their way into gaming.  

Even the local game development industry is projected to expand despite the pandemic. The previous community restrictions drove 43 million Filipino gamers to spend $572 million on games in 2020 according to games market analyst Newszoo. This spend catapulted the Philippines to become the world’s 25th biggest game revenue market and a key driver of Southeast Asia’s overall games market.

So, what does it take to be a part of this booming industry? Aside from a passion for gaming, aspiring game developers need hard and soft skills like programming, design, time management, problem solving, creativity, and storytelling, which are all taught under Mapúa University’s Bachelor of Science in Entertainment and Multimedia Computing program. 

Mapúa’s three-year Entertainment and Multimedia Computing program enables students to master technical and creative skills such as freehand and digital drawing, 2D and 3D rendering, scriptwriting, storyboarding, audio design, and sound engineering. They will also become proficient in game programming, applied game physics, game math, artificial intelligence, game networking, game design, and production. Students will also head a capstone project and internship. 

Graduates of the program have a myriad of exciting potential career paths. These range from game designer, game quality assurance tester, game programmer, game artist, game audio engineer, to game producers. Outside the gaming industry, they may work as graphic designers and gaming magazine staff. 

Ivan Gavino, a Mapúa Entertainment and Multimedia Computing batch 2022 graduate working as a junior game developer for Kooapps PH, finds his work rewarding. 

“Game Developing is very exciting since the only limit to what you can make is your own creativity. By going through the game development program, you are provided with all the skills to turn your imagination into a real playable game. It is very rewarding to see your own work slowly transform into a fully developed project, and seeing the joy your games bring to others,” said Gavino.

Gavino also explained that Mapúa’s Entertainment and Multimedia Computing program gave him a solid foundation that helped him especially in the early stages of his career.

Daniel Kyle N. Tala, a batch 2021 graduate who now works as a junior developer for Definite Studios, seconded this. 

“There will be times where you will be stuck on some game logics for days, have problems with the assets, and even change the whole idea of the game. Despite all of that, after finishing the game, you will be proud of yourself and feel fulfilled, seeing the assets move, having the right music for your game, and seeing your code work flawlessly,” said Tala. 

He mentioned that the program’s emphasis on different programming languages made him a versatile programmer so it’s easier for him to mix and match code to solve problems.

Through Mapúa’s Entertainment and Multimedia Computing program, young Filipino gamers have a better chance to level up their game, establish lasting careers, and still have fun playing and gaining mana points while earning their keep.  

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